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Brillat-Savarin also had much to say dbout the advantages of restaurants ''the gourmand's paradise"), which had appeared in France in about 1770. Restaurants offered a choice of "at least 12 soups, 15 or 20 beef entrees, 20 mutton entrees, 30 chicken or game entrees, 16 or 20 veal dishes, 12 pastry dishes, 24 fish dishes, 15 roasts, 50 side dishes, 50 dessert dishes. In addition, the fortunate gastronome can wash his meal down with at least 30 kinds of wine, from burgundy to Cape wine and tokay."

During his exile in America (1794-1796) Brillat-Savarin was invited to dine at a tavern in New York with two Englishmen. The dinner consisted of a huge piece of roast beef, a roast turkey, boiled vegetables, cabbage salad and a jam tart. They drank "in the French fashion; that is to say, the wine was served from the beginning: it was a very good claret.... After the claret came port, and after the port madeira.... After the wine came rum, brandy, whisky, raspberry brandy, and a huge bowl of punch." The Englishmen had to be carried out, but Brillat-Savarin had paced himself, and claimed to have finished the meal with a clear head.

Not surprisingly, Brillat-Savarin thought the English in general had gross appetites, but there were Englishmen who prided themselves on their gourmandism. William Makepeace Thackeray described a dinner at a French restaurant in 1841: yotage julienne (a light soup with strips of vegetables); entrecote aux epinards (beefsteak with spinach), with a "firm, generous burgundy that nobly supported the meat"; truffled partridge, which came with a bottle of Sauternes; followed by Roquefort cheese (a fine accompaniment to what was left of the Sauternes).

While there was no shortage of imported wine in America, Brillat-Savarin described with pleasure a meal that had no wine at all: "There was a superb piece of corned beef, a stewed goose, a magnificent leg of mutton, a vast selection of vegetables, and at either end of the table two huge jugs of a cider so excellent that I could have gone on drinking it for ever." The temperance movement at the end of the 19th century, followed by Prohibition (1919-1933), stopped ordinary Americans from drinking wine with their meals for many years. The non-alcoholic drinks that Prohibition made a necessity became a habit for some: an American cookery book written in 1896 and updated regularly into the 1960s claimed that "coffee goes with every meal and almost every occasion".

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